A weblog authored by Carthik about the latest in the WordPress world.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

What’s Right with WordPress 2.3

Filed under: — Carthik @ 8:10 pm

So WordPress 2.3 is out, and the release announcement is exciting to read.

First off, in 2.3, WordPress gives us real Tags. Tags are not categories. I was really disappointed when WordPress.com started confusing categories for tags, and wrote about why Tags are not Categories. WordPress has finally come clean, and seen the light, and explained what’s what over at the Tags and Categories article at WordPress.com blog. Now to take it a step further in the right direction, it would help if everyone thought about how tags add value to a blog. Tag Clouds are cool, but they’re not the be-all and end-all of tagging. Here’s some great ways to use the tags you painstaking created by tagging individual posts:

  1. Improve search results on blogs by searching for articles containing the search term(s) as tags.
  2. Provide an easy way to navigate the blog using Tag intersections, unions, and other common operations on sets. This would make it possible to find articles where your favorite blogger talks about two of your favorite things, or one thing and not another. The focus is on making information easier to find.

The above should replace the “site search tags” found under almost all of Lorelle’s articles, and then some.

The second step in the right direction is the removal of the links to developers’ blogs from the default blogroll. A lot of the old developers and volunteers have been inactive and non-contributing members for a long time now. Indeed, it was good to have a PageRank of 8 for my own blog, but I had the link to my blog removed about a year and a half ago when I decided to stop scaling down on my WordPress volunteer work. I did that because I thought that was a part of stepping down gracefully, and wasn’t too comfortable with going, “So who the heck is this ‘Carthik’ in my blogroll?,” long after I stopped contributing. Also, I wasn’t sure my contributions were at-par with those of some of the others who put in way more effort. It’s hard to decide where to draw the line with recognizing contributions to open source projects anyways. It’s better now since no one can point at finger at some old contributor profiting without contributing by means of selling text links on their blog now. Good job!

The MovableType importer is no longer as memory hungry as it used to be. You can also add new importers by installing importer plugins. Very cool.

A lot of the changes were from the most wanted changes/ideas proposed by users, and that is good news in itself. Now if only some of the other ideas are implemented, like searching in both “Posts” and “Pages” by default, instead of just in Posts.

So, on a personal level, these are my thoughts about the changes in 2.3. The only small thing that irritates me are the new names in the db:

Three new terms tables (schema) term_relationships, term_taxonomy, and terms support combined post categories, link categories, and the new tags. The tables, categories, link2cat, and link2post, are gone!

I am yet to understand what “terms” are, what “taxonomy” is and what kind of relationships “term_relationships” describes. If these tables deal with categories, tags, and I assume, blogroll links, wouldn’t it better to have those terms in the db table name, instead of the term “term”? I wonder. The new db table names give away nothing about their intended purpose in the database. All three terms are brand new, never before seen in the WordPress world. I am sure there must have a good reason to name them thus, which I’d love to know more about.

So, in your opinion, what’s wrong about WordPress 2.3?


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